The UGC, was formally established in November 1956 as a statutory body of the Government of India through an Act of Parliament for the coordination, determination and maintenance of standards of university education in India. In order to ensure effective region-wise coverage throughout the country, the UGC has decentralised its operations by setting up six regional centres at Pune, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bhopal, Guwahati and Bangalore.

The UGC has the unique distinction of being the only grant-giving agency in the country which has been vested with two responsibilities: that of providing funds and that of coordination, determination and maintenance of standards in institutions of higher education.

The UGC's mandate includes: 

  • Promoting and coordinating university education.
  • Determining and maintaining standards of teaching, examination and research in universities.
  • Framing regulations on minimum standards of education.
  • Monitoring developments in the field of collegiate and university education; disbursing grants to the universities and colleges.
  • Serving as a vital link between the Union and state governments and institutions of higher learning.
  • Advising the Central and State governments on the measures necessary for improvement of university education.

UGC Regional Offices

Pursuance to the National Policy on Education (1986), the UGC de-centralised its working by opening seven regional offices catering to the states under it. The objectives of setting up these offices were to bring about de-centralisation and to ensure that a large number of colleges through out the country, which are covered under Section 2(f) and 12(B) of the UGC Act, will have better opportunites of response to their needs and problems by way of easier access.


The following schemes are being implemented by the regional offices

  • Development of Colleges affiliated to State Universities
  • Minor Research Projects for College teachers
  • Autonomous Colleges
  • Seminar/Symposia/Conference etc. for colleges
  • Construction of Women's Hostel (Special scheme)
  • Award of Teacher Fellowship to College Teachers for doing M.Phil/Ph.D.
  • Financial assistance to Teachers - Visually Handicapped (Blind)

UGC function is that of providing funds and to maintain
the minimum standard of education in the country.

UGC ensures that the education in all top universities of India is of the same standard so that the students passing out of these colleges can be considered equal. India is a vast country as a result there are thousands of colleges offering different courses. It is impossible to ensure that a common standard is maintained. However, UGC indeed makes this impossible task possible.

Enhancing Access

  • Setting up Centres for Preservation and Promotion of Endangered Languages in Central Universities .
  • Funding Support to State Universities for Study and Research in Indigenous and Endangered Languages of India.
  • Human Resource Development Centres (HRDCs) and Regional Centres for Capacity Building (RCCBs).
  • Establishment of Centre for Fostering Social Responsibility and Community Engagement in University.
  • General Development Assistance to Central, State Universities and Institutions Deemed to be Universities During XII Plan.
  • Swachh Bharat-Swasth Bharat Scheme of the UGC (2014)
  • Establishment/Upgradation of Hindi Department
  • e-content Development of Project, Submission for Assistance from UGC under NME-ICT
  • XII Plan guidelines of the schemes ‘Development of Women’s Studies in Indian Universities and Colleges’ and ‘Capacity Building of Women Managers in Higher Education’.
  • Guidelines of the scheme of Epoch Making Social Thinkers of India

Imparting Relevant Education

  • Revised Guidelines for Emeritus Fellowship
  • Revised Guidelines for Junior Research Fellowship in Science, Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) and Research Associateship (RA) for Foreign Nationals
  • Providing Free Education for Sports Medal Winner/Participants of National/International Events

Ensuring Equity

  • Swami Vivekananda Single Girl Child Scholarship for Research in Social Sciences.
  • Centres for Study of Social Inclusion and Exclusion
  • Equal Opportunity Cell
  • Coaching Schemes for SC/ST/OBC (Non-Creamy Layer) & Minority Students for Universities
  • Schemes for Persons with Disability

Improving quality and excellence

  • Universities with Potential for Excellence (UPE)/Universities of Excellence (UoE)
  • Guidelines for Centre with Potential for Excellence in a Particular Area (CPEPA)
  • Joint Appointment of Faculty
  • Internal Quality Assurance Cell (IQAC) for Universities
  • Special Assistance Programme

Augmenting Research Facilities

  • Revised Guidelines for Major Research Projects
  • Research Award
  • Guidelines for the One Time Grant Scheme
  • MHRD/UGC Empowered Committee on Initiative on Start-UP Grant for newly Recruited Faculty

Enhancing facilities for Students

  • Community Colleges in Universities and Colleges
  • Introduction of Bachelor of Vocational (B.Voc) Programme in Universities and Colleges under the National Skill Qualification Framework (NSQF)
  • Deen Dayal Upadhyay Centres for Knowledge Acquisition and Upgradation of Skilled Human Abilities and Livelihood (KAUSHAL) in Universities and Colleges (Deen Dayal Upadhyay Kaushal Kendras) (2014 - 2017)
  • Curricular Aspects, Assessment Criteria and Credit System in Skill based Vocational Courses under National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF)

Providing Faculty Improvement Programmes

  • Universities with Potential for Excellence (UPE)/Universities of Excellence (UoE)
  • Centre with Potential for Excellence in a Particular Area (CPEPA)
  • Joint Appointment of Faculty
  • Internal Quality Assurance Cell (IQAC) for Universities
  • Special Assistance Programme